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This type of family isn't often recognized in film. 'A Wrinkle in Time' made it happen.

‘A Wrinkle in Time' made representation central to its plot.

"A Wrinkle in Time" was released in theaters on March 9, and it's continuing the movement toward diversifying representation in film.        

Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images for Disney.

As the first African-American woman to helm a big budget blockbuster, DuVernay took an opportunity to try a film genre that was new to her. It’s safe to say, her entrance into the world of children’s movies was a success: "A Wrinkle in Time" came in at #2 in its opening weekend, second only to "Black Panther," also helmed by a black filmmaker.


The majestic, whimsical film captured the hearts of many for a number of reasons: the remarkable costumes, awe-inspiring soundtrack, and a star-studded cast.  

But there’s one aspect of the movie that particularly caught the eyes of many, including actress Tessa Thompson.

Photo by Lily Lawrence/Getty Images for The Blackhouse Foundation at Sundance 2018.

As a biracial woman, Tessa Thompson says she felt seen when watching Meg, a biracial young girl and her family.  

Thompson pointed out that she wished she’d seen that kind of on-screen representation as a child, and many of her followers agreed.  

Meg, who is played by Storm Reid, is the brainy, curious daughter of a white man (Chris Pine) and a black, biracial woman (Gugu Mbatha-Raw). Throughout the film, Meg works to navigate the complex experiences that many biracial children face, such as learning how to love herself, growing to value and adore her hair, and reckoning with feelings of belonging in a world that sometimes doesn’t recognize you.  

[rebelmouse-image 19346309 dam="1" original_size="640x265" caption="Image via "A Wrinkle in Time"/Disney/YouTube" expand=1]Image via "A Wrinkle in Time"/Disney/YouTube

When a film showcases these experiences, viewers see a family unit that isn’t typically given screen time.

It's an added source of representation for biracial kids looking for characters to identify with.  

Thompson has long advocated for films that tell the stories of women, people of color, LGBTQ people, and other underrepresented groups. Most recently, she praised actor Michael B. Jordan for adopting inclusion ridersclauses in contracts that requires a certain level of diversity among a project’s cast and crew — into all of his production company’s projects. She has continued to push for movies and television shows that feature different experiences and identities.

Photo by Joe Scarnici/Getty Images for AT&T and DIRECTV.

Films that reflect the different experiences in our world don’t only normalize underrepresented groups of people, they empower them.  

Empowering underrepresented groups on the big screen is close to DuVernay’s heart. The director has made it clear that representation will continue to be a key element in her films.  

“When we're talking about diversity, it's not a box to check,” DuVernay told Fast Company. "It is a reality that should be deeply felt and held and valued by all of us."    

Photo by Bard Barket/Getty Images for The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.

Thompson’s tweet, the responses of agreement, and DuVernay's explicit calls to continue telling diverse stories, amplifies an important reality that filmmakers should take note of: Children deserve to see themselves represented, whether that be through the lens of race, gender, or sexuality.  

Let’s hope "A Wrinkle in Time" is just the beginning.

Joy

Man uses TikTok to offer 'dinner with dad' to any kid that needs one, even adult ones

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud.

Come for the food, stay for the wholesomeness.

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud. His TikTok channel is dedicated to giving people intimate conversations they might long to have with their own father, but can’t. The most popular is his “Dinner With Dad” segment.

The concept is simple: Clayton, aka Dad, always sets down two plates of food. He always tells you what’s for dinner. He always blesses the food. He always checks in with how you’re doing.

I stress the stability here, because as someone who grew up with a less-than-stable relationship with their parents, it stood out immediately. I found myself breathing a sigh of relief at Clayton’s consistency. I also noticed the immediate emotional connection created just by being asked, “How was your day?” According to relationship coach and couples counselor Don Olund, these two elements—stability and connection—are fundamental cravings that children have of their parents. Perhaps we never really stop needing it from them.


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Joy

Meet Eva, the hero dog who risked her life saving her owner from a mountain lion

Wilson had been walking down a path with Eva when a mountain lion suddenly appeared.

Photo by Didssph on Unsplash

A sweet face and fierce loyalty: Belgian Malinois defends owner.

The Belgian Malinois is a special breed of dog. It's highly intelligent, extremely athletic and needs a ton of interaction. While these attributes make the Belgian Malinois the perfect dog for police and military work, they can be a bit of a handful as a typical pet.

As Belgian Malinois owner Erin Wilson jokingly told NPR, they’re basically "a German shepherd on steroids or crack or cocaine.”

It was her Malinois Eva’s natural drive, however, that ended up saving Wilson’s life.

According to a news release from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Wilson had been walking down a path with Eva slightly ahead of her when a mountain lion suddenly appeared and swiped Wilson across the left shoulder. She quickly yelled Eva’s name and the dog’s instincts kicked in immediately. Eva rushed in to defend her owner.

It wasn’t long, though, before the mountain lion won the upper hand, much to Wilson’s horror.

She told TODAY, “They fought for a couple seconds, and then I heard her start crying. That’s when the cat latched on to her skull.”

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"Veteran" mom and "new" mom parent differently.

When a couple has their first child, they start out with the greatest of intentions and expectations. The child will only eat organic food. They will never watch TV or have screen time and will always stay clean.

But soon, reality sets in and if they have more kids, they'll probably be raised with a lot less attention. As a result, first-born kids turn out a bit differently than their younger siblings.

"Rules are a bit more rigid, attention and validation is directed and somewhat excessive," Niro Feliciano, LCSW, a psychotherapist and anxiety specialist, told Parents. "As a result, firstborns tend to be leaders, high achievers, people-pleasing, rule-following and conscientious, several of the qualities that tend to predict success."

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